AZAGC Chairman's Message
Moved by Conservative Senator Steve Pierce
As chairman I thought it important to let our membership and others in our industry know how much the chapter appreciates the courage and leadership State Senator Steve Pierce embodies. On numerous occasions he has taken spears for standing up for what is right for Arizona and his community over extreme partisan bickering that has consumed our political landscape. I read his letter to Precinct Committee Men and Woman (PCs) with great interest and thought it important enough to share it, in its entirety, with our industry and industry partners.
Below is his open letter to PCs rightfully explaining his position on Medicaid restoration. Please share this with cynics about our legislative process, it will show that there is hope for those that think our leaders must be thoughtful and critical about their decisions as opposed to sticking their finger in the air trying to figure out what way the political winds are blowing.
Thank you Senator Steve Pierce.
Doug Declusin, Chairman
An Open Letter the PCs in Yavapai County
September 10, 2013
To the PCs in Yavapai County:
For more than 40 years I have been a Republican PC in Yavapai County. I was first appointed in the 70′s by Chairman Bob Loftus, worked on the finance committee in the 90′s with Chairman Mal Barett, Sr and when the party was fractured by an outside and competing group, I worked hard with Sam Steiger to reunite Yavapai County Republicans and return to one, strong party organization. At that time I was approached to serve as Chairman of the County Party, which I did, and we grew our numbers, raised our profile and were able to raise a significant amount of money that we used to spread our message of conservative values. It was a good time for Yavapai Republicans and I am proud to have been part of such a prosperous time for our county organization. Several years later I ran for the State Senate, against an incumbent who had strayed from the Conservative ideals we hold so dearly. My conservative platform was a simple one and reflected the issues that the voters of LD 1 cared about then and I would challenge continue to care about to this day.
Currently, my conservative values are being called into question as a result of my recent vote to support Governor Brewers’ plan to restore Medicaid. Some are accusing me of supporting Obamacare, a claim that is both inaccurate and insulting. An accurate review of my votes will reflect my consistent opposition to Obamacare. My concerns about the long-term and devastating impact of this health care legislation have not changed in the least. As Senate President I created a healthcare working group to discuss a number of bills that had been introduced that would have created additional burdens to small businesses and impose unnecessary restrictions on our healthcare providers and ultimately limiting access to care.
To be clear: My vote in support of Medicaid restoration was, a vote in support of rural health care.
I voted in support of Yavapai Regional Medical Center. How would the closure of our community hospital affect our access to locally provided healthcare let alone our prospect for expanded economic development? Rural hospitals across the state were facing certain closure without the passage of Medicaid restoration. I voted for the Governor’s plan because I did not think it was acceptable to tell our citizens that driving to Phoenix or elsewhere for major medical care was their only option.
I voted in support of West Yavapai Guidance Clinic (WYGC). WYGC was on the verge of closing without the additional funding provided by Medicaid restoration. Anyone that has ever needed the help WYGC provides knows the importance of having those services available locally.
I voted in support of veterans living in Arizona. Without this plan there would have been over 11,000 veterans AND their spouses without any coverage. It is unconscionable to deny care and coverage to the brave men and women who have fought for the freedoms we hold so dear.
I voted in support of Arizona small businesses. Without Medicaid restoration, Arizona’s small businesses would be facing a penalty from the federal government for not providing health care coverage to people who should be eligible for AHCCS. Arizona’s small businesses cannot afford this penalty.
I am proud, of the leaders in Arizona who have stood with me, and continue to stand with me. Leaders like our Yavapai County Board of Supervisors, Yavapai County Sheriff, County Sherriff’s Association, Governor Fife Symington, Former AZ GOP Chairman Randy Pullen, Conservative Columnist Bob Robb, Kevin McCarthy of the Arizona Tax Research Association, The Arizona Chamber of Commerce, Arizona Small Business Association, The Prescott Chamber of Commerce, and The Prescott Valley Chamber of Commerce, just to name a few.
I have never supported ObamaCare, nor have I ever been a supporter of President Obama. But much like this resolution is born from a hatred spurned by disagreement on one issue, so did Party infighting ensure his re-election. It is sad that our party has become so divided.
Immediately following the vote on Medicaid restoration I wrote an article citing all of the reasons why it was the best possible decision for our community and for our great state. I hope you will take the time to read it and truly take it to heart.
Since my election in 2008 I have always welcomed input from my constituents and my door remains open to anybody who wishes to discuss any issue facing our state. I know that Medicaid restoration is a very complicated issue and because of that I have devoted many issues of my newsletter to explaining the facts. I have posted numerous article on my website, seven since May, regarding Medicaid restoration and have done my best to clear up any misinformation that might be out there.
I am proud of my service on behalf of Legislative District 1. I was elected at one of our state’s darkest times. We faced looming unemployment, unprecedented foreclosures and the need to make devastating cuts to programs that provided for some of our state’s most needy citizens. Today we have weathered much of that storm and have created a rainy day fund that will hopefully help current and future policymakers focus on continuing to create an environment where Arizona will be among the top states in job creation.
I challenge you to learn the facts and seek out the truth before you judge me. I am and will continue to be proud of my conservative values.
Thank you for your time.
Senator Steve Pierce